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2020 Player Reviews: Andrew Knapp

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Maybe it’s time I eat my words...

Toronto Blue Jays v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

The Numbers

.278/.404/.849, 129 OPS+, 2 HR, 15 RBI, 89 PA

The Background

Knapp was drafted by the Phillies in the second round of the 2013 draft. He made his Major League debut in 2017 and has been the team’s backup catcher ever since.

The Good

As a long-standing critic of Knapp, I think it’s time for me to finally eat my words and admit that he isn’t as bad as I have always made him out to be. While I will still make endless (endless) jokes about wanting to take a nap when he’s playing, it’s time to admit that he is a serviceable backup catcher who brings consistency to his role. (He’s consistently mediocre, but at least he’s consistent!) Mediocrity is understandable and expected out of backup catchers. After all, if they were better, they’d be starters. And hey, he hit career highs this season in RBI, BA, SLG, OPS, and OPS+!

The Bad

The bad is pretty much the same as the good: Knapp is serviceable. He’s nothing exciting and nothing special. While that isn’t an issue as long as he remains the backup, it’s somewhat frustrating to think that the Phillies once used a second-round draft pick to acquire a league-average backup catcher. Plus, with drama surrounding Realmuto, the prospect of starting catcher Andrew Knapp is enough to give even the most optimistic Phillies fans nightmares.

The Future

The biggest question mark of this offseason for the Phillies is undoubtably what will happen with 2019 Gold Glove and Silver Slugger winner J.T. Realmuto. Regardless of where Realmuto signs, the Phillies have at least one catcher returning in 2021. They signed Knapp to a one-year, $1.1 million deal on December 2. If Realmuto re-signs with the Phillies, Knapp will revive his role from 2020. If Realmuto ends up elsewhere, well… let’s just hope Dombrowski gets a Realmuto deal done for multiple reasons.